Category Archive Blog

ByApex Digital Media

Google Maps Messaging – Customers Direct Message From Your Listing

A New Channel for leads, Google Maps Messaging

Great news for businesses – Google Maps Messaging now allows customers to direct message you via your maps listing. As the general public at large shifts to mobile devices this is a fantastic addition by the team at Google that should help businesses of all types to better interact with customers searching for goods & services.

If you have a published Google Business listing (based in the US only for now) you are able to set up a verified phone number to receive live SMS text messages. The message comes directly to your phone from your Google business listing! This way you can instantly answer questions and interface with prospective customers. A brand new channel for leads and new business.

In addition to being a new channel for leads, it also enables you to better communicate with other local businesses. If you don’t already have a Google Business listing it is highly advised! In addition to the many opportunities to connect with local customers, the business listing will also help to improve your local SEO presence.

Fantastic upgrade for SMB’s Google!

Read more from Google Support

ByApex Digital Media

Brand – The Origin & History From Cattle to Computers

Brand – it’s a term we all know being part of a consumer culture. Where did the term come from though, what are it’s origins?

cattle brandA few weeks ago I went with my daughters class on a field trip to an old cattle ranch. One of the exercises we did was to create our own logo brand. Ranchers back in the day identified their cattle with a unique logo that was burned into their skin or a “brand.” This little exercise made me realize that the term “brand” comes from cowboys. In it’s origin, a “brand” was originally a way to identify your cattle, it was your logo. The idea of livestock branding goes back even further than the old West. When you factor all this in, “branding” dates all the way back to ancient Egypt! Until my daughter’s field trip I had never even made the connection between cattle branding and modern day digital advertising & branding but that’s really where it all comes from.

History of the Word Brand

The word “brand” is of Germanic origins from the same root also comes “burn.” It originally meant anything hot or burning in the same sense as “firebrand” or a burning stick. By the Middle Ages, it commonly identified the process of burning a mark into stock animals with thick hides, such as cattle, so as to identify ownership. This practice became widespread in countries with large cattle populations, such as Spain.

These terms and customs were eventually brought across the ocean to North & South America. They were further refined by the vaquero tradition which dominated what is now the southwestern United States & northern Mexico. In the Old West, a “branding iron” became the tool of choice for cattle ranchers. It was a basic iron rod with a simple symbol or mark – eventually known as a “logo.” Cowboys would heat the rod in a fire. Once the iron had become red hot, it was pressed against the hide of the cow. Once livestock was emblazoned with a unique brand cattle owned by multiple ranches could graze freely together on the same open range.

Modern Day Marketing & Branding

Branding is a set of marketing and communication methods that help companies to set themselves apart. The long term goal is to create a lasting impression in the minds of customers. There are several aspects involved including identity, communication (via logos & trademarks), awareness, loyalty, and other management strategies.

 

Apple - Think Different

Apple’s Brand is Distinct

Apple is a great example because they are the most profitable company in the world right now… (or at least in the top 3 depending on what day it is.) What they’ve been able to do as a brand is truly remarkable. Apple instantly associated itself with revolutionary thought. From the day they burst on to the computer scene they billed themselves as an alternative to the stale corporate world of personal computers. “Think Different” those 2 words combined with the silhouette of a bitten apple have grown into a technology empire. Apple’s success is of course due to many factors beyond their logo and ad copy but these are important parts of how a business like Apple makes the jump from garage to empire.

Clearly Defining the Value of a Brand

In accounting, a brand defined as an intangible asset is often the most valuable asset on a corporation’s balance sheet. Companies need to manage their brands carefully to create shareholder value, and their valuation is an important management technique that ascribes a money value to a brand. This allows marketing investment to be managed so as to maximize shareholder value.

Yes it’s true, a brand on it’s own can hold value. Going back to my Apple analogy – think about the weight that their brand now carries. Anything Apple puts out will instantly be bought by it’s loyal following. This is not just due to the logo and marketing though – Apple has spent years delivering quality products to it’s customers and their brand has a reputation for this. So while the logo and the messaging are important what’s even more important in marketing is delivering on that message and retaining the customers that your brand marketing attracts.

 

ByApex Digital Media

Qualities of an Effective Social Media Manager

A few years ago the idea of having a social media manager was actual comedy. “You mean pay someone to tweet and post on Facebook for me? LOL!!” Look around today and that is no longer some hilarious joke. These days Social Media is where your online audience is most likely to be found. Social Media Management, that is having a designated social media manager and a coherent social media strategy are now mandatory assets for any growing business.

What Makes an Effective Social Media Manager?

There is a difference between simply being a social media manager and being an EFFECTIVE social media manager. We wanted to do break it down to some basic qualities to look for. This is criteria we use to measure the effectiveness of our reps – and are all good qualities to look for when hiring a social media manager or agency to represent your business.

A Customer Service Mindset

The first thing any good social media manager should have is a customer service mindset. What does that mean? Well they should be empathetic and responsive to customer needs. According to a recent study by Sprout Social – social media channels are the first place customers go for care. If you’re a business owner I don’t have to tell you how important customer service is. Having someone manning your social channels who is friendly and responsive will bring your business into the new millennium… if it’s not already here.

Photography & Graphic Design Skills

Studies show that social media posts with photos & video are the most widely engaged. For this reason you want to make sure your social media manager has an eye for graphics and at least some photo editing skills. Thanks to apps like Instagram and their filters just about anyone can take a decent photograph, but having that little bit of artistic flare can make all the difference sometimes. Also having a competent manager who can use graphics tools such as Photoshop to add your brand’s logo or watermark can be important. Graphic design & photography skills should definitely be in your social media manager’s arsenal. This article titled “Why Why Every Marketer in 2017 Needs to Be a (Part-Time) Designer”  pretty much says it all as well as provides some pointers for people who might be lacking in this area.

Community Engagement

This one is similar to customer service, but while customer service requires simply being responsive and empathetic, community engagement requires a bit more technical expertise. A good social media manager knows how to do things like welcome newbies and reward power users. (Mashable has some great pointers for increasing community engagement.) A truly skilled social media manager knows how to ask the right questions at the right time. Someone effective in this role also knows how to facilitate engagement, answer questions about the product, company or industry.

Analytics

Any social manager should have a keen eye for analytics. Your business has a goal and social media efforts should ultimately speak to this goal. Maybe the goal is just to get people to read articles on your site so you can collect ad revenue, or maybe you’re a car dealership and you need to find a certain type of car enthusiast. Whatever the case if you are spending money you should be able to see results of that spend and the analytics are what show you the results of what you’re doing. Any social media manager worth their title will be able to show you analytics and make adjustments and optimizations to your strategy based on them.

Love of Pop Culture

Most of what trends on social media involves what’s popular in culture at any given time. “Trending” is an important term here. Trends represent a popular current and social media in the modern age can be a HUGE driver of trends… as we have seen. At this point to deny that reality would be detrimental to your bank account. Knowing this, it’s good to have a social media manager who is enthusiastic about pop culture, what’s in style or trending. Regardless of the size or scope of your business your social media messaging can be tied into these trends and used as a more effective vehicle for growing your audience or customer base.

There are several other traits and skills to seek in a person or agency who handles your social media strategy. These are some of the core areas of expertise we feel are necessary to be the most effective social media manager possible. This will change and evolve though which is another area that a keen sense of what’s trending will help you stay at the forefront of finding and engaging new business via social media channels.

(sourced from: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/289363)

ByApex Digital Media

The Power of Video Content

Online Video Content Has Quickly Become Your Most Important Marketing Asset

All you have to is ask yourself the question – “when I’m online what do I do most?” the answer is more than likely: watch video content. Sure some people read articles but even articles most likely have a video accompaniment these days (like this one :D)

Did you know that more video content is uploaded to the internet in a single month than network television has produced in three decades? Pretty crazy eh?

You need to put out content to stay visible – just to keep up with everyone else really. Don’t despair though, it’s quite easy. Chances are good all you need to do is turn a camera on. Let me give you an example.

online video content for digital marketing

If you’re a popular antique shop you probably have a store full of odd knicknacks and items. Maybe even hundreds – that’s hundreds of videos waiting to be made. A unique video for each item that could be shared each and every day. I’m just using this as a basic example of course but it applies to any business. If you are a maid who cleans houses, every day you have a before / after video to make – provided you have the owners permission and so on.

Internet marketing is constantly changing but video content will always be valuable. Search engine optimization (SEO) is complex and algorithms are always changing. One thing is always true though: Video content is and will continue to be a big driver of traffic. So how can you use video to strengthen your content marketing strategy and SEO? It’s simple really – produce it and share it. That’s really all you need to do.

Video Content Helps SEO When Embedded in Pages

A great place to start is with existing content you already have. To give you an example our website https://apexdigitalmedia.com has long had articles about social media management. This year though we created a video and embedded it at the top of that page. Not only does this help the user experience giving people in a hurry a way to quickly consume the content – it also helped greatly with the overall organic ranking of the page. Google tends to elevate content that is helpful to users and video is definitely helpful.

YouTube is the 2nd Largest Search Engine Online

Yeah Google has the search game locked down – they invented the first largest search engine and bought the second. With this in mind you need to feed into these searches. If you don’t have video content guess what… you are INVISIBLE in YouTube searches. Creating strong video content not only makes for a better user experience, it also makes you visible in the world’s 2nd largest search engine.

As you can see, digital video content is the most important asset you have at your disposal right now. If you don’t already have a strong video presence, what are you waiting for? Get to work!

ByApex Digital Media

Most Internet Users Prefer Search Engines to Find Local Products

According to a recent report by eMarketer, the majority of internet users prefer online search to find local products. Roughly a third of them also believe these results to be “trustworthy and accurate.”

The survey was conducted among internet users in March of 2017 by Burke for the Local Search Association (LSA). One really huge piece of news that businesses should also take note of:

“eight out of 10 respondents said a search engine was their top choice among a collection of digital and non-digital sources to look up information for local businesses last year.”

While printed white and yellow page publications hit an all time low, 80% of users surveyed said they used a search engine in the week prior to the survey. The data showed that online search lead other sources when it comes to consumer trust and accuracy. In other words, Google is doing a great job at producing high-quality search results for it’s users.

Respondents Cited a ‘Company Website’ As Their 2nd Choice

Another huge takeaway from this survey is the importance of a branded website. People trust Google because Google has created an environment that gives it’s users good reason to trust them. A user’s 2nd choice though was a company website – which speaks volumes about the importance of your own online brand and making sure that it’s easy for customers to find.

source: https://www.emarketer.com/Article/Most-Internet-Users-Prefer-Search-Engines-Find-Local-Products/1015737

ByApex Digital Media

Tips For Effective Social Media Management

We cover a lot about social media on our blog because in 2016 and beyond it’s one of the more important factors in digital business. Without a visible social presence your customers, fans, loyal devotees, etc. have no way to interact with you or check in on recent happenings. But what constitutes effective social media management? Here are a few things we feel are important for any truly “effective” social media manager to focus on.

Effective Social Media Management

effective social media management starts with a strategy

Post & Share Interesting Content That Starts Conversations

Part of being a great social manager is curating content. That’s right, simply seeking out and sharing recent news articles or undiscovered gems is a big part of the social media management game. Not only does this make you a useful source of information it helps generate valuable social reference for your brand… if you’re doing it right. Here are a few other methods that our social media managers use to foster better engagement for clients:

Sharing Interesting Blog Articles: If you run a restaurant you want to associate yourself with content relevant to restaurant goers. Articles about recent events like Octoberfest or Food Truck Festivals is likely the kind of thing that’s going to spark interest among your followers – they followed you because they like or are interested in your restaurant. So give them a reason to stay interested!

Post An Inspirational Picture or Quote: Be careful with this one as it’s quickly becoming a bit passé to go overboard. But if it’s heartfelt and relevant to what you do that can eclipse any corny aspects. If you’re going to use these, just be conscious of your business, brand and followers to avoid becoming the butt of a huge internet joke.

social media tricks

social media tips & tricks

Comment on a recent news item: This is another area you have to be extremely careful. Wading into politics on any level can quickly alienate a demographic of potential customers. Our recommendation is to stay “Above the fray” but if a news item is positive, upbeat, unhindered by politics and relevant to your industry it could be the perfect vehicle for conversation and added search relevance.

Have a clear call to action: If you’re going to solicit opinions or want to start a conversation for gods sake be clear about it! End your post with a question like “What do you think?” or “We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!” – This is a great way to engage people and give them a seat at the table for discussion. Great social media management creates a conversation where multiple parties enthusiastically exchange thoughts and opinions on a given topic, so make sure you push for this level of engagement.

Build a Following by Following…

The world of social media is a simple one. It’s a direct parallel to the actual reality we live in every day. People want to be noticed. People want to know that they matter… and as stupid as it sounds a re-tweet or a follow makes people feel that way. I have to admit I am personally addicted to checking my phone for new Instagram likes… as I’m sure a lot of you are. Snapchat… don’t even get me started. Understand that EVERYONE on social media has a bit of this attitude and feed into it by following people who follow brands or companies similar to yours.

If I was going to start a social media account for an up and coming shoe brand tomorrow, the 2nd thing I’d do (after designing a clean and crisp header & profile image) is go to Nike’s social profiles and start following their followers. Why? Because those people will instantly get that request and go: “Oh I got a new follower, anyone who follows me has to be cool…” and they will look at your profile, some will click your link and read though your feed, etc. etc. You do it all the time, I do too. Social platforms like Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest also work on hashtags as a “discovery” engine. So doing this will not only help you get discovered by people who care about the type of stuff you’re doing, eventually you’ll have a growing following of your own.

Create Your Own Content

Last but not least is the most important factor in an effective social media management strategy – creating original content. A big part of driving social traffic from those platforms to your own properties is creating content to feed into them. If you’re sharing other people’s content you’re driving traffic to their websites for them to benefit from. It’s much better to have your own content strategy in place and to create keyword rich articles, videos and graphics that will feed into organic search for terms relevant to your business.

This of course is the most trying of any of the tasks an effective social media manager would have

(source: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/225609)

ByApex Digital Media

Enterprise SEO Strategy & Management

Enterprise SEO strategy is incredibly important if you have a large website. Each page is something that creates value for your business long term. If you have hundreds of thousands of pages there is an incredible long term value in making those pages as visible as possible.

Walk Before You Run

A 3rd party firm or a newly hired group of SEO techs are going to need a roadmap based on your goals. While you aren’t expected to write this without professional help, you should at least distill your goals to something achievable. You know your company better than anyone and you need to translate real world goals into crystal clear line items. This way the people you employ to execute your strategy have a picture of what they need to accomplish.

Effective Enterprise SEO Management is Organization & Consistency

When it comes to Enterprise SEO strategy you can get into a lot of detail, so much so that the big picture can get lost. For this reason we like to organize and simplify our process. Through this method we are able to create SEO campaigns that can be scaled to any size organization. We begin by breaking things into 2 separate phases:

  • A Foundational Phase: This first phase involves the core foundation of your site. “About Us” “What We Do,” etc. Your core site pages communicate the value of your product or service. This is the foundation of your business. There are both written copy and technical aspects of your foundation that need to be addressed. This is an important first step in formulating any enterprise SEO strategy.
  • A Continuous Phase: The continuous phase requires consistent output of content. This can be through a blog, social media, in the form of video, etc. but it needs to be consistent. Search algorithms love fresh and relevant content, so part of any great ongoing enterprise SEO strategy is a consistent stream of content.
Enterprise SEO Strategy

Modern SEO is a variety of things…

The Elements of Foundational Enterprise SEO Strategy

  • Discovery: Understanding the business model, user personas, and ultimately the most important keywords for the campaign.
  • Technical Optimization: Aligning Page Titles, Meta data, H tags, alt tags and content to the target keywords. images, PDFs, shopping feeds, local search, and – most importantly – video.
  • Best Practices: Technical issues based on known best practices including duplicate content issues, indexing problems, URL structure or any other technical problem that affects your SEO performance.
  • Analytics: Ensuring that there is an analytics infrastructure to support reporting requirements.
    User Experience: Evaluate and improve important user experience metrics like site speed, bounce rate, and time on site.

Elements of Continuous Enterprise SEO Strategy

  • Content: In order to position yourself as a known expert in your field content is still king. This can be any type of content really, blogs, videos, images, etc. A combination of everything is your best bet. The key with content more than anything is to stay consistent. Much like working on a farm there are things you need to be doing every day if you want to yield a harvest.
  • Off-Site Optimization: This is the practice of getting backlinks to your content that are relevant. It is also a much less important ranking factor than it once was. Black Hat SEO techniques of old relied almost solely on backlink profiles. This is one reason Google squashed their relevance.
  • Social Media: Social proof is a big factor in ranking today. A good portion of online traffic is on social media platforms so it only makes sense. If you are getting shared and viewed on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram your content is obviously resonating and deserves to be elevated.

While we like to break these up for simplicity, a few of the foundational elements can cross over to the continual. It only makes sense that as you continue to develop new content you would want it to be technically sound and aligned with best practices.

Just remember that before you go full speed into an enterprise SEO campaign you arm yourself with a coherent strategy based on your business needs.

Contact Apex Digital Media to discuss hiring us for our Enterprise SEO expertise.

info sourced from: https://searchenginewatch.com/sew/how-to/2234928/defining-an-enterprise-seo-strategy

ByApex Digital Media

Tips for Effective Medical Web Design

Medical Web Design

Medical Digital Technology

How is Medical Web Design Different from Standard Web Design?

As a business that’s located in Beverly Hills, CA we get a lot of inquiries from medical professionals about medical web design. So what separates it from standard web design? To start medical professionals need to project a professional image that showcases their practice and area’s of expertise. There are a few other major things you need to consider when building a medical website. Let’s walk through a few of them shall we?

Narrow Your Focus to Your Specialty

If you’re a doctor with multiple specialties it’s good to narrow your focus to one core specialty. This goes to a basic marketing principal “KISS” or “Keep it Simple, Stupid.” This is a big help to your overall site structure and navigation. It’s also a great booster for SEO (Search Engine Optimization). The more focused your content and structure are, the better you will do in standard search results.

Medical Web Design for Sleep Disorders

Dr. Robert B. Shpiner

As an example, one of our clients Dr. Robert B Shpiner has multiple specialties. He cites pulmonary diseases, sleep apnea, second opinions and internal medicine as a few of his specialties. Rather than try to cram all these keywords into the title and other important parts of the site we narrowed the focus to “sleep disorders” and got him the domain “Valley Sleep Doctor.” This domain contains the keyword for “sleep” and “doctor” in the domain name which will also help greatly with SEO.

Branding is Important – Even in Medical Web Design

A lot of medical professionals may not see themselves as a “brand” but your brand is who you are.  So it’s important to create a brand for yourself if you don’t already have one. There are several steps to branding a medical practice here are three important ones to consider:

  • Narrow Your Focus: Not to be redundant here, but you need to start with identifying some of your practices best traits. Focus on your depth of experience in the field, the technology you use, convenience (offering evening and weekend appointments, etc.). Most importantly, stay true to your core areas of expertise. Don’€™t try and pretend to be something you are not. Consumers will quickly recognize this as false advertising and it will do more harm than good.
  • Create Video Content: Video is a key signal for search engine optimization. If yo
    medical web design for mobile

    Mobile Site Sample

    u have video content that speaks to your expertise you are much more likely to be visible to potential patients than with out it. Not only do Google, Bing & Yahoo rank video content higher in search, it’s also a convenient way to get your message through to a prospect. Most people won’t take the time to read a long blog article, but will watch a 2 minute video.

  • Share information: Part of good SEO is creating content, plain and simple. So the more content you have on your site that showcases your expertise the better. As an example, if you are a dermatologist 20 articles about different skin conditions you’ve encountered have a much better chance of being discovered than a single page outlining what you do in relation to dermatology. A few videos and infographics and you have a winning mix of information that is likely to be seen by prospective patients.

Your Biggest Audience is On Mobile Devices

By the latest measurements, roughly 65% of your audience is on some kind of tablet or mobile phone. Desktop computers are now a “secondary touchpoint” for most internet users. Knowing that more than half of your audience is on a mobile device it only makes sense.  Your mobile site should be your first priority.

device usage - web marketing

Mobile Design is Important

Create a Quick Video Introduction to Your Practice

The last, but most important tip is to create a video introduction to familiarize people with you and your practice. Digital video is the new normal and having a visible example of who you are and what you do will make people more comfortable about picking up the phone and making an appointment. The video we created for Dr. Shpiner has been an incredible tool for introducing the Dr. and familiarizing him with potential patients.

 

Most medical professionals don’t have the time or know how to do all this on their own. If you’re interested in discussing our rates and packages for medical web design, give us a call or send us an email: – We’d love to talk with you.

ByApex Digital Media

Local SEO Beverly Hills, CA Edition

We talk a lot about different types of SEO on the blog. More recently, local SEO has become the most important factor for small businesses. The reason for this is simple, Google is the new yellow pages. Local search is how people find your business. So it would only make sense that local SEO be an important item on a marketer’s check list.

Since Apex Digital Media is an SEO firm it would be easy for us to talk about one of our many client projects. However, we thought it would be best to focus on our own website and optimization. After all, if we’re really good at what we do – we should rank well for keywords we are targeting. So let’s take a look at the elements of effective local SEO at our location in – local SEO Beverly Hills Edition!

Major Ranking Factors in Local SEO

To start let’s look at a breakdown of local SEO ranking factors from the good people at Moz.

Local SEO Ranking Factors

Breakdown % of signals for local seo

As you can see the biggest factors are “on page signals” – so keyword and technical optimization on your site itself. Also – “Link Signals” which is basically back links to your site from other sources.

Type in Local SEO Beverly Hills – What Do YOU Get?

If I type in a search for “local seo beverly hills” my Google currently pulls up the following results:

Local SEO Beverly Hills SERP

No Apex Yet… 🙁

No visible sign of us there right now. Let’s look at why that is and what the competition is doing to be so visible.

Our Local SEO is Set for Los Angeles – Not Beverly Hills

A quick glance at the Apex website’s title tags will show that we’re titled for Los Angels, not Beverly Hills.

Apex Local SEO - Los Angeles, CA

Changing our title tags to “Apex Digital Media | Beverly Hills, CA” would help us ascend higher in the rankings for the local search term of beverly hills. However, we are currently targeting Los Angeles as a whole, since it’s a larger market.

We Don’t Have “local seo beverly hills” in our URL

A quick scroll down the page produces a result that is curious… basically another firm who is copying our name. “Apex Web Firm.” This site is likely ranking because they have the keyword “local seo beverly hills” in their domain. Something we will have once this blog post is live.

One thing this firm is doing right is including the keyword in the domain. They are a bit further down the page (and are obviously riding our coattails) but I’m impressed with their knowledge and ability to rank so quickly.

apexwebfirm-fake-spam

Here’s How Important Having Keywords in Your URL Can Be…

One company “Local Positions” is ranking in the 3rd or 4th slot for “local seo beverly hills” and they aren’t even located in beverly hills. A quick search or two turns up quite a bit of interesting information about this company.

First, they are located at: 30401 Agoura Road, Suite 201 Agoura Hills, California, 91301 – which is about 30 miles from Beverly Hills. They have /local-seo-beverly-hills-ca in their domain and obviously know how to create backlinks that give them lift.

beverly-hills-sign

Second, a deeper dig will reveal that “Local Positions” is actually – National Positions, a notoriously shady company who was called out for low brow tactics by Rand Fishkin a few years back. One valuable lesson we can learn from them is the importance of the keywords in the domain name. This is obviously a very important signal for local SEO because it’s helping to elevate them despite their lack of any visible location in Beverly Hills.

Local SEO is Important

One thing is certain, all of these factors are an important part of any business’ digital marketing strategy. If you aren’t visible in local search people can’t find you. The less people that can find you the less customers you have…  If you don’t have the time or expertise to perform local SEO on your own, consider hiring an agency like Apex Digital Media to do the heavy lifting for you.

Email us to discuss your Local SEO >>

ByApex Digital Media

Audience Development Techniques [The Digital Capitalist]

The term “audience development” is basically a friendly way of saying “advertising.” Essentially you’re taking steps to draw an audience. Your audience is what is going to make you money in most cases so it’s a valuable thing to develop.

There are a lot of different ways to do this, most of them cost money and if they don’t they cost time. If you’re a small business owner, time = money so one way or another you’re going to end up paying here. It’s not necessarily a bad thing though… the trade off is worth it in the end. Once you have a thriving digital presence that’s bringing you real world business you’ll be thanking yourself for the investment.

Organic Search Engine Optimization

search engine optimization

SEO

The first and best way to get real traffic is through optimizing your site for keyword searches. Today it’s basically making sure that your site is 100% technically sound and producing regular content. This is one of the reasons I’m writing this blog right now. Simply put, regularly writing or creating video about what you do is the best way to gain organic search ranking. Google is looking for fresh content relevant to the keywords people are searching by.

In an industry like digital marketing things are continually evolving and changing. So content is really the best way to show the search engine that we are aware of the changes in our industry. It’s a simple idea but one that is lost on a lot of people. Relevance – this is what Google thrives on and to dominate in organic search you need to have relevance. So a video that was made yesterday about best practices for Pay Per Click is going to take precedent over something that was produced 10 years ago… in most cases. There are exceptions here, especially when the content is poor, has holes in it or there is a massive amount of “social proof” for other content. That is users have shown an affinity to a particular piece of information that makes it still more relevant than your newer piece of information. Hopefully that makes sense.

Best Practices

A big ranking factor is making sure your site is aligned with best practices. This was hinted at earlier but to explain in more detail, Google has good reasoning behind a lot of their rules and regulations. The goal is to have a search engine that succeeds at their mission:

PROVIDE THE USER WITH THE BEST AND MOST RELEVANT SEARCH RESULTS QUICKLY AND EFFICIENTLY

Simply stated, that’s the goal of Google and if you play by their rules they will elevate your website naturally.

A great example of this type of practice is the character limit on title tags and meta descriptions. These limitations are not simply arbitrary. They are designed to assure that when a user gets a SERP (Search Engine Results Page) it is clean and easy to navigate with accurate descriptions of each link displayed. As more and more people search, Google’s algorithms begin to note the links that get the most clicks and elevate those organically based on this and many other factors.

Finding and Using Keywords

This is a simple process that we hammer on quite a bit if you read our blogs but it’s an important one. The first thing you should do is ask yourself: “If I was looking for my website what would I type in?” – the answer to this question contains the words you will optimize your website and future content around.

This is probably the single most important aspect of how you word and layout your website. It’s also very simple and often neglected so by taking it seriously you instantly put yourself ahead of a lot of your competition. It’s also not something you should generalize with as people can find you in a variety of situations. For example, if you sell auto parts you would want to optimize your homepage around the keyword “auto parts” but a typical user may find you while searching for an oil filter for a 1978 Chevy Nova. For this reason like it or not the bigger and more vast your website is the better chances you have of netting organic search traffic.

Social Media

social media marketing

social media

When you think about where people go online these days a large portion of the hot spots are social media
networks. Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, Pinterest, etc. All of these can produce traffic for a business due to the discovery engines that drive them. We have written page upon page about social media marketing so I won’t go into a ton of detail here but just mention that it’s extremely important to have a social presence if you are serious about growing your audience.

Pay Per Click Advertising

There are a lot of different advertising methods you can use to get traffic to your site but Google AdWords Pay Per Click is probably the most efficient and best quality source of purchased traffic. The reason being is that search has real intent behind it. You can buy traffic from Facebook to run to your auto parts store but when I go to Facebook I don’t go there looking to buy auto parts. So advertising in an environment like Facebook is going to be less effective for sales but a good avenue for branding. Google AdWords on the other hand allows you to buy into keyword searches that have real intent. If you’re bidding on the keyword “Buy Auto Parts” in Google it’s a safe bet that most of those searches are actually people looking to buy auto parts. Other than maybe Amazon, there aren’t a ton of places you can buy that kind of traffic. Pay Per Click is the best way to get visible instantly if you have a budget to spend.

Click here to read - download "The DIgital Capitalist" e-Book

Click here to read – download “The Digital Capitalist” e-Book